What is Craniosacral Therapy?
Craniosacral Therapy (CST) is a very gentle, non-invasive type of body treatment. Usually no more than 5 grams of pressure (weight of a nickel) is used. Because it is gentle, there are few contraindications, and therefore can be used for almost any type of medical problem. Dr Elizabeth Grady does not use Craniosacral Therapy if there is any current or recent history of cancer as the therapy may spread cancerous cells.
What Conditions Are Improved With Craniosacral Therapy?
CST is used as a preventive health measure for its ability to bolster resistance to disease and sustain overall good health. It is effective for a wide range of medical problems including:
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) or Chronic Fatigue Immune Deficiency Syndrome (CFIDS)
- chronic pain/arthritis pain
- connective-tissue disorder
- Fibromyalgia pain
- frequent headaches
- immune disorders
- infantile disorders
- learning disabilities
- migraine headaches
- pain and emotions related to cancer
- post-MVA (motor vehicle accident) pain
- post-traumatic stress disorder
- stress and tension-related problems
- traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries
The Craniosacral System
The Craniosacral system consists of the membranes and fluid that surround and support the brain and the spinal cord. It extends from the bones of the head (cranium) down to the bones at the base of the spine (sacrum). The fluid within the membranes is continuously draining and refilling.
The filling and draining creates gentle, rhythmic, expanding and contracting movements that can be felt anywhere in the body by a trained therapist. These movements are the craniosacral rhythm, of which there are four different aspects:
- Symmetry helps the therapist evaluate how even the flexion and extension movements are in relation to each other
- Quality determines how much vitality the system exhibits during its motion
- Amplitude is the measurement of how far the body moves in flexion or extension
- Rate monitors how fast the body moves through one cycle
Utilizing these, the therapist determines where the body fascia is restricted, and then can facilitate a release.
A Typical Session
The patient rests fully-clothed on a massage table while the therapist applies a light touch to monitor the craniosacral rhythm. The therapist conducts other gentle assessments and corrects sources of pain and Gland using gentle manipulative techniques. This encourages the body to use its own power to heal more efficiently. Because a body exerts considerable energy to adapt to its restrictions, most people find the sessions to be deeply relaxing when those restrictions are released.